HTML Basics for Small Business Website Owners

HTML Basics for Small Business Website Owners

Inputting HTML to build web pages or fine tune your blogs doesn’t have to be a chore. In fact, once you gain a familiarity with the language, you can write down all you need in a two page summary for quick reference.
A little background on myself: I used to write HTML in grade school, back at the time I was no more than fifteen years old. At that time, I often designed web pages for non-profit organizations and did a little work for a local SEO firm on the side, plus a lady who apparently did the best quality eyelash extensions. Unfortunately, I was too young to work in the web design field, and by the time I became of age, companies started to professionalize the field and demand college degrees. So I had to go to college. There I picked up Javascript, at that time the language was a baby. Then after 9-11 happened, all the I.T jobs were outsourced to India, I suffered an illness, and I became discouraged with the entire industry. There were simply no jobs and I quit my craft.

Now I’m trying to pick the craft back up for hobby purposes. So hopefully, in a mutually beneficial relationship, I can refresh my skills by helping you learn the basics.

What Do I Need To Input HTML?

You don’t need any fancy tools or software programs to learn HTML. All you need is your notepad.exe program. This is a default program found on all Windows Operating Systems that can be found in the Accessories category. You don’t need an HTML editor. You don’t need a web server. You don’t need a web site. Although later on I recommend you acquire such material if you want to put your technical skills to good use, but for the purpose of learning the basics, such material isn’t needed.

When you make an HTML doument using notepad, be sure to save the file under an .htm or .html file extension. For example, if you wish to name your HTML document “testing”, you will need to go to File, then Save As. . . and under File name type the following: testing.html (see figure 1.1). Finally, click Save.Figure 1.1Figure 1.1HTML: The Science of Tags

HTML stands for Hyper Text Markup Language. In HTML, we use markup tags. Tags are the “skeletal structure” of the language. Tags allow you to describe a given web page. HTML tags are keywords surrounded by angle brackets (example: <html>). HTML tags normally come in pairs, such as <b> and </b>.

The starting tag is the opening command you wish to execute, the ending tag indicates you wish to finish the execution. For example: <b>Hi</b> will put in bold the word Hi. The <b> indicates you wish to open with a bold command, then the </b> indicates you wish to close the command. A tag should always be closed with </>, otherwise the command will carry through the entire web document. For example <b>Hi</b> my name is <b>Don.</b> will bold the words Hi and Don, but the words “my name is” will have normal lettering. The end result will be: Hi my name is Don.

HTML doucments describe web pages. HTML documents contain HTML tags and plain text. The purpose of a web browser (such as Internet Explorer and Firefox) is to read HTML documents and display them as web pages. If the HTML is written properly, the browser shouldn’t display the tags, but uses the tags to interpret the content of the page.

To start a web page, we use the tag <html> This indicates to the browser that there is an HTML document for which it can communicate with. We close the HTML document with </html> The second html command we input is <body> This informs the browser that our HTML document has a display. Without the use of the body command, you’re essentially signaling to your browser that you have an empty web page. We close the body command with </body>

Now let us use some combinations of what we have learned. A quick review, so far you know:
<html> opens an html document and </html> closes the said document.    <body> opens the body of an html document and </body> closes the body.    <b> makes the proceeding letters bold and </b> puts the bold lettering to an end.

Let’s make an HTML document, input the following on your notepad (testing.html):

Hi, this is my first HTML document. <b>Cool!</b>

This concludes our lesson on HTML basics. Later, I’ll create a post that explains how to build an email list and some concepts of greater advancement: Frames, tables, lists, forms, and colors. I’ll also explain how you can get a domain name for the websites you wish to construct.

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